Update on Impact in Haiti on “Boulangerie Notre Dame”

Here is a recent status report on the Notre Dame Projects in Haiti, from its Director, Sister Katherine (“Sissy”) Corr. Please donate to help our suffring brothers and sisters in Haiti!

Boulangerie Sign – fortunately the bakery had damage only to he gates but the water purification building was badly damaged at a time clean water will be greatly needed.

Haiti experienced a devasting 7.2-magnitude earthquake this past weekend. The city of Les Cayes, home to our Boulangerie Notre Dame, was severely impacted. As we shared in our recent [ https://www.ndmva.org/connect/news/ ]NDMV newsletter, the country has experienced several challenges in the last year that have contributed to mounting instability including inflation, civil unrest, COVID-19 and the assassination of Haitian President Jovenel Moïse. Now our Haitian brothers and sisters face the loss of homes, loved ones, and access to food and clean water. We learn more as searches continue, as aftershocks from the earthquake persist, and as a dangerous tropical storm approaches, but here we will provide an update of what we know right now.

Our workers
We have been able to reach 16 bakery production workers who are alive and as safe as they can be. We are still trying to locate 2 production workers, and 50 sellers across 5 communities. Many of our sellers live in La Savane, a community that is considerably more vulnerable to the earthquake and approaching tropical storm. Currently, there are no NDMV American staff or volunteers on the ground in Haiti.

In searching for our co-workers, we got a vivid picture of the widespread devastation and suffering of the people.~(See attached photos)

Rubble in streets near Bakery

Many of our workers have experienced major trauma including injuries associated with being tossed by the earthquake, anxiety associated with not being able to get out of a second-floor apartment, the devastation of leaving home without loved ones or belongings, and more. Our workers are also worried about their families and community, the bakery, jobs, food, and clean water.

Status of the bakery
As soon as he could on Saturday, our driver/translator, Ulrick, waved down a moto to get a ride to the bakery.~He arrived to see our bright yellow building intact. The bakery and café, designed and built by the local community, stands tall. This miracle is thanks to our talented engineer, Bolo, who insured that the building could withstand earthquakes. The fence at the front entrance was the only thing noticeably out of place.

Later, Ephesien, our bakery manager, walked through the bakery and evaluated the effects of the earthquake. It is obvious that there are some initial repairs that are essential to continuing operations at the bakery. Repairs include: machines that shifted during impact, welding the oven back to the exhaust fan and, broken pipes.

Needed repairs to oven!

Additionally, our new building containing the reverse osmosis water purification system suffered a collapsed wall. It is critical to address these repairs immediately so that we can provide bread and clean water to the people in this desperate situation.

We have 6 distribution sites where thousands of people that we are in relationship with will be in need of emergency help; not only bread and water, but housing needs. On Monday evening, tropical storm Grace is projected to bring high winds and several inches of rain to Haiti. It is nerve-racking to think of the additional impact it might have on the community of Les Cayes.~

We will continue to collaborate with churches and other NGOs in the area to alleviate some of the suffering.~We hope you can help Notre Dame do its part to help the Haitian community get through this momentous crisis.~

Whatever financial assistance you can contribute will be a help.~Send your donation to:

Notre Dame Mission Volunteers
(Attn: Haiti Project)
5405 Loch Raven Blvd.
Baltimore, MD 21239

OR online: https://www.ndmva.org/donate/ [Paste in your browser]

We are able to get donations directly to our Boulangerie Notre Dame leaders who will implement the plan in the local communities where we work/serve every day.

Above all, let us keep praying for God’s special assistance.”